NOSFERATU Grew Hair
In a sense, every vampire movie that has been made since 1922 has been a sequel to NOSFERATU, since it was the one that started it all. But the 1979 remake of NOSFERATU, directed by Werner Herzog and starring the erratic but brilliant Klaus Kinski–and a classic in its own right–had a more direct sequel. MORE direct, that is, but still not a straight sequel. Basically, they just copied the title, figuring it would make more money. I’m sure they were right, but the latter film, released in 1988 and originally entitled NOSFERATU IN VENICE (yes, it’s Italian, unlike its predecessor, which is a German film, although an alternate version was filmed wherein the actors speak English), has become in intervening years better known as simply THE VAMPIRE OF VENICE. It does feature Kinski again, and the lead character IS called “Nosferatu,” but those are the only connections to Herzog’s film, or to the original silent classic.
In NOSFERATU IN VENICE, the titular vampire has long hair. Why? Did he grow it out since his last onscreen appearance? Maybe, but the real reason was that Klaus Kinski refused to shave his head again, or perform under makeup, and they couldn’t very well make him. He was Klaus Kinski, after all, and more than enough trouble WITHOUT riling him up. Several directors fled the project, unable to work with him.
But I like to think that Graf Orlock, never called by name in the sequel, did indeed grow his hair out. That would mean that he was always bald by choice. All us guys who shave our heads can get behind that, right, brothers?